If you are a fan of eggplant, like I am, this traditional Indian dish will satisfy the cravings on any given day. Easy to make, it is a winner at the table every time. Make sure to check your pantry for the essential spices, turmeric, cumin, asefoetida (hing), and coriander.
There has been an abundance of eggplant here in the Valley of the Sun, so I thought I’d make a vegetable dish without using the cookbook. I followed steps I’ve learned, toasting the seed spices, soaking tamarind, and stacking flavors. I found a name for this recipe, and I think I like it. Let me know if you do.
You are probably wondering how to find some of the ingredients I use in this recipe. I have the advantage of having a Vietnamese Grocer several blocks from the house. I can buy some of the specialty items there, split mung beans and eggplant especially. For the bulk spices I go to the Herbalist down the street. They carry a decent supply of fresh herbs and spices. Their cumin is fantastic. When I need to find the exotic, there is a super chain called LeeLees that specializes in International foods. They have a great produce section as well as a selection of the Indian Spices I use. If you can’t find some of these ingredients in your market, check online, there are several reputable companies with reasonable prices. read more
Spices make up the “palette” of a chef. They have a long and intriguing story of travel; how they spread out from a point of origin to all over the globe. Each culture treats these spices a little differently, yet there seems to be several common spices used in global cuisine.
Cumin, coriander, turmeric, and ginger make up the base of most Asian and South Asian cooking. Pick up any Indian cook book, and at least three of the four will be listed. The combination is the base of a “curry,” or gravy, that is made to compliment the food on the table. read more
The other night I came home from work and was really tired. Still, I had to get dinner on the table. I had one can of coconut milk left on the shelf. In the refrigerator there were some left-over diced veggies, smoked tofu, and rice. I have a well stocked pantry, so I gathered up some spices, and went to work. And I came up with Smokey Tofu and Veggies, with Magic Coconut Sauce.
What I love about Tofu Scramble is it's versatility. This is by no means the be all and end all recipe for this dish. Experiment with the base, and come up with different vegetables and spices to put in it. I like jalapenos and chili powder, so it goes into the one I make here at home, but you can add any thing, really, that you want to, it all depends on your palate.
I’ve been making these Tofu Cutlets for several years now. You can use just about any marinade that you want, but in the process I discovered that the Orange Cumin Marinade is the best for these juicy and delightful cutlets. My family loves them even just to snack on.
Here's a sauce that took me some time to create. There was a time that I was afraid of coconut milk. As a Fearless Chef, I must face these ingredients, and let them teach me what they want to become. I used the spices I love to create food that I love.